Now this might be a holiday hell review but Tenerife as a holiday destination is an amazing place. I wouldn’t want to put anyone off visiting this gorgeous country, the volcanic scenery really is something special and I dare say you could have an absolutely fantastic holiday here. Sadly our Tenerife holiday was completely spoiled by the “Best” (aka WORST) Tenerife Hotel. I would love to go back to Tenerife and give it a second chance but I would NEVER stay at this Hotel again!
Quite literally from the moment we walked into the reception to check in you could tell the 4* rating was a completely false representation of this hotel. It looked incredibly dated and not at all what we’d been sold! Our flight times meant we arrived at the hotel just after they had finished serving the evening meal and despite asking at the reception desk we were told there were no provisions for late arrival travellers, not even a sandwich or bottle of water!
After checking in we made our own way to our room and found it to be incredibly basic, dirty and generally not up to a 4* standard. The beds were so hard I may as well have been sleeping on the floor, although if I’d have done that I would have had to share with all the ants! Needless to say we barely slept a wink the whole time we were there.
Our first experience of the “food” was the following morning when we went down for “Breakfast”. I use the term breakfast in the loosest sense of the word as what was provided was barely suitable for feeding to a stray dog! I settled on some miscellaneous cheese and a slice of what could possibly have been ham, who knows as nothing was labelled and if you suffered allergies it was pot luck! All meals thereafter were of equal repulsiveness and myself and my son lived on foul tasting chips, possibly Ham and cheese for the duration of our stay.
Now we had paid for all-inclusive and therefore on our first full day we went to go and get ourselves some drinks and an ice cream from the bar. We were very quickly informed that the “ALL” inclusive drinks were from a dispenser in the corner! Serve yourself! If I recall correctly you could have red or white wine (replace the word wine for vinegar!), some miscellaneous watered down “beer” that my partner said tasted ‘off’, a selection of “Spirits” which again were all miscellaneous bottles and the one I dared to try tasted like cough medicine. When it came to ice-creams they had a lovely poster displaying a large selection of Cornetto’s, Magnum’s and ice lollies etc, however the only one allowed for “all” inclusive customers was a nasty Choc Ice!
It was utterly disgraceful! I have NEVER been so appalled by a hotel in my life! I’d spent thousands of pounds on what was sold to us by our local travel agent to be this amazing luxury holiday and it was the polar opposite! (Needless to say we complained and took matters a lot further when we got back to the UK!)
So take note, when booking your holiday’s just check that all-inclusive actually means ALL inclusive! Having stayed all-inclusive in various hotels previously I didn’t expect it to mean anything else but ALL inclusive so be warned, it is not guaranteed!
Now appalling hotel aside, Tenerife IS amazing and during our time there we did have some great days, trips out and I would certainly recommend doing the following;
- Siam Park – OMG this place is out of this world! THE best water park EVER! We had an amazing time here. The organisation from the hotel was again shocking but once we were there it was fantastic! I would definitely go back if we returned to Tenerife. The rides were exhilarating and the Siam beach was amazing! The wave machine was huge and it was just the best fun, just what we needed on our holiday from hell!
- Mount Teide Jeep Safari Tour – This was again another fab day out, touring all around the island in the back of an open top jeep! All around these amazing tracks and up Mount Teide, then a stop off for a traditional Tenerife meal. Great fun, our tour guide was hilarious and I would certainly do it again. The views were spectacular and gave you a real sense of the islands history and special nature.
- Crazy Golf at Mini Golf Santiago in Playa de las Americas – This was so much fun, it does get busy but we went just as it was getting dark and the lights and effects are great! Would highly recommend you do this if you visit.
Playa de las Americas is also a nice area, there are plenty of shops and entertainment. The musical fountain is especially nice of an evening. The beach is nice (although MUCH further from our hotel than we were advised!) and there are parasols and loungers you can hire too but be warned my eldest was stung by a jelly fish whilst swimming here!
The only other activity my partner and eldest participated in was a Scuba diving excursion with Blue diving school. First they went snorkelling which they both really enjoyed, it gave my eldest loads of confidence in the sea and he was beaming when they’d finished. Then in the afternoon they were both to go scuba diving. My more experienced partner completed and enjoyed his dive but my eldest was 11 at the time and didn’t manage to get down and dive at all. The equipment was leaking air which scared him, they did replace the leaking regulator but then forced him to walk quite a distance carrying all the very heavy gear with no help in the heat of the day. By the time he got to the sea he was exhausted and panicking. The Blue dive school were very unhelpful, showed no sympathy to him whatsoever, they dragged him out of the sea and abandoned him on the beach in all his heavy kit as they all buggered off diving! He was distraught and absolutely devastated he hadn’t managed to dive and I certainly would not recommend this trip for anyone under the age of 16.
In hindsight we shouldn’t have gone abroad for his first scuba experience but he was a very confident swimmer and it was something he was more than capable of given the proper instruction.
He passed his PADI Open Water on returning to the UK thanks to the amazing instruction and training from the team at DIVE A LOT SCUBA who built his confidence back up. I can’t praise them highly enough!